Starting a business for the first time and wonder where to begin? Give your new venture the best chance of success with these top 10 business tips! These tips are the best advice I've collected from other entrepreneurs and developed from my own experience of more than 25 years of having "been there and done that" as a small business owner.
Top 10 Business Tips
1) Be passionate about what you do.
I always tell young adults when deciding what they want to do for a career, to think about the things they are passionate about and go into that field. Don't over anyalize if it is the perfect job or not, just do what you feel is right in your heart. Having a passion for your job, makes life much easier to get up and do it everyday!
You're going to devote a lot of time and energy to starting a business and building it into a successful enterprise, so it's really important that you truly deeply enjoy what you do, whether it be in real estate, design or providing financial advice.
2) Start your business while you're still employed.
How long can most people live without money? Not long. And it may be a long time before your new business actually makes any profits. Being employed while you're starting a business means money in your pocket while you're going through the start up process.
3) Don't do it alone.
You need a support system while you're starting a business (and afterwards). A family member or friend that you can bounce ideas off and who will listen sympathetically to the latest business start up crisis is invaluable.
Even better, find a mentor, or if you qualify, apply for a business start up program. When you're starting a business experienced guidance is the best support system of all.
4) Get clients or customers first.
Don't wait until you've officially started your business to line these up, because your business can't survive without them.
Do the networking. Make the contacts. Sell or even give away your products or services. It would also be a good idea to start a business facebook page to network with individuals prior to actually starting the business. You can't start marketing too soon!
5) Write a Business Plan.
The main reason for doing a business plan first when you're thinking of starting a business is that it can help you avoid sinking your time and money into starting a business that will not succeed.
Remember, you don't have to work through a full scale business plan for each new business idea you come up with; ask these 5 questions:
1. Is there a market for it?
2. What’s the profit potential of this business?
3. Is the market saturated?
4. What are the obstacles to my business plan and are they surmountable?
5. Do I have the committment, time and resources I need to see this through?
6) Do the research.
You'll do a lot of research writing a business plan, but that's just a start. When you're starting a business, you need to become an expert on your industry, products and services if you're not already. Joining related industry or professional associations before you start your business is a great idea.
7) Get professional help.
On the other hand, just because you're starting a business, doesn't mean you have to be an expert on everything. I cannot stress enough, how important it is to make sure you only do the things you are good at, and hire others do the things you are not qualified to do. If you're not an accountant or bookkeeper, hire one (or both). If you are not good at marketing your business or setting up a facebook page, hire someone qualified to do so. You will waste more time and possibly money in the long run, trying to do things yourself that you are not qualified to do. In addition to wasting time and money, you risk the possiblilty of creating an appearance for your business that may not appear as professional as it should. Remember, first impression is critical in business, so you want to appear professional right from the start.
8) Get the money lined up.
Save up if you have to. Approach potential investors and lenders. Figure our your financial fall-back plan. Don't expect to start a business and then walk into a bank and get money. Traditional lenders don't like new ideas and don't like businesses without proven track records. Look at creative ways to raise money for your business.
9) Be professional from the get-go.
Everything about you and the way you do business needs to let people know that you are a professional running a serious business.
That means getting all the marketing materials such as a logo, sign, professional business cards, a business phone, business website, along with a business email address, social media pages, and treating people in a professional and courteous manner.
10) Get the legal and tax issues right the first time.
It's much more difficult and expensive to unsnarl a mess afterwards. Have you registered your business name? Will you have to have Worker's Compensation Insurance or deal with payroll taxes ? How will the business ownership affect your income tax situation? Learn what your legal and tax responsibilities are before you start your business and operate accordingly.